My Cascade Duffle Coat

Hey, Sewists! I am back to share my newest coat make and review. The pattern I used is the Grainline Studio Cascade Duffle Coat in the longer view B. This coat has been a long time coming and is a part of my Smells Like Fall Spirit collection. I have been sharing bits on Instagram for the last few months and I can finally share the finished project! I bought pattern years ago and originally had intended to use a different wool for it. Then I picked up three yards of this red/black and cream/tan herringbone wool blend from Fabric Mart and knew that it was meant for this pattern. I had to let it sit in the stash for a couple of years though before I could muster the desire to cut into it.

One of the most fun parts of this coat is the surprise print lining. This leopard poly charmeuse was originally intended for this coat only it was going to be with the olive green Melton wool I first bought. I decided that I really liked the crazy loud combination of the leopard and herringbone. The contrast of the two is so fun and definitely unique.

I only made a few alterations to the pattern pieces after making the first muslin way back in January. First, I added an inch to each side seam and the underarm piece for a bit more ease. Second, I shortened the length by 3″ to make it hit me just above mid-thigh. I did also make a few additions that the pattern doesn’t call for. As is my standard, I did underline all my shell pieces with cotton flannel for added structure and warmth. I also added 1/2″ shoulder pads for more definition. Without them, the shoulders were just a bit too droopy. Lastly, I tacked the shell to the facings at several different spots in the sleeves, hood, and hem to prevent the lining from pulling away.

My favorite part of the coat is the olive green and gold vintage Talon zipper I used.  It is a few inches shorter than the length called for, but I could not find a modern coat zipper with as much awesome vintage appeal as the Talon zip. Most modern zips that I found were plastic too. That just didn’t seem like it would hold up well in the long run and I didn’t want to have to replace it down the line. Plus, using the vintage zip was a little more sustainable than using a new zip I would have to go out and buy.

I took my time with the other details on this coat too. The instructions called for topstitching on one side of the seam only. I opted to press my seams open and topstitch 1/4″ on each side of the seam. I did this for all the front and back panels as well as the shoulder seams. I think that topstitching both sides added a more professional look to the finished coat.

The toggles I picked up were brand new and came with pre-punched holes. The pattern only called for three, but I added a fourth. Each toggle was also handstitched down to ensure they were attached consistently. That is the one thing from when I made Eric’s coat that bothers me.  Even though his were store bought, I machine stitched them down and you can tell. It is hard to machine stitch those perfectly.  The pre-punched ones were a lifesaver and look so much better! I plan on stashing several more sets of these for future projects.

In the end, I am so in love with this coat! I don’t know why I put off making it for so long. It was easy.  Yes, there are a lot of steps because it is a much more involved project, but there is nothing super challenging.  I fully recommend this pattern to any level of sewist who is wanting to make outerwear.

I did blog a bit about it over on the Sewcialists with a few starter sustainability tips for sewing.  Go check it out!

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Sew Long Summer, Hello Fall

Call me a basic white girl all you want, I will own it. Except for Pumpkin Spice Lattes, those are gross. Fall is my absolute favorite season. I enjoy summer for its sunshine and lovely greenery, but its heat and humidity can go back to where they came from. I want none of that crap. So, it is with open arms and a big ole smile that I happily welcome fall. I was so ready for fall back in July that I actually took the time to fully plan a 10 piece fall collection for myself. I shared the quick and dirty sketches on Insta with descriptions of each. I then added a couple more garments after sharing that are not pictured. The collection is a little bit of 90s grunge with modern design silhouettes.

I will eventually share some more about coming up with my collection once I get another piece or two completed, but today I am excited to share the first garment. First up in my Smells Like Fall Spirit Collection (thanks Nirvana) is my first York Pinafore from Helen’s Closet. This is also my first time using an HC pattern. I must say, they do not disappoint.  Her instructions are well written for new sewists to easily pick up on. She has included lots of tips and why it is important to follow them. I am interested to try the Suki Kimono at some point in the future.

For this version, I reached into my more recent stash acquisitions and pulled out this rusty coral brushed cotton twill. I picked this up from Cali Fabrics in end of 2016. I was going to use it to make a Kelly Anorak but decided it was a bit to structured for what I was going for.  Thus it made its way into my stash. I think it was the perfect fabric to pick for my first York. It sewed up really easy since there are not a lot of seams in the garment and the armholes and neckline are finished with double fold bias tape. That really helps to eliminate a lot of bulk that would otherwise happen.

I made view A with the large scoop pockets. My measurements put me into an XXL and I made that size without alterations. The pattern does say it is drafted for a 5’6″ frame and I am 5’8″. I did not add any length to it because I wanted it to come up a bit higher than my other dresses. I wanted to able to pair it with leggings for fall like I did in these photos.

I do want to say I used less fabric than the pattern called for. The twill I used was about 60″ wide, so I was able to fold the selvedge edges to meet in the center. This created two folds allowing both my front and back pieces to be cut on the fold side by side. The pattern called for 1.6 yards and I ended up using just over 1 yard. I still have 1.25 yards of this fabric left. I also used a package and a half of gray double fold bias tape as mentioned above. Total materials cost for the bias tape and fabric is $11.60. I put about 2.5 hours of time into cutting and sewing it including breaks. I value my time at $20 per hour, so the total garment cost equates to $61.60. Honestly, I think that is fairly close to what I would pay retail for a similar garment from Torrid.

I plan on styling this for fall with the leggings, t-shirt, and striped vest like I have here. I also want to pair the York with a close fitting striped shirt that is on my to do list for my collection.

Have you made a York yet? Share them with me if you have, I want to see them!

Welcome to the Sew Long Summer blog tour. We’re going to have a fun one this year.

A nice group of sewing bloggers are going to share with you how we say “Sew Long Summer” and we’ll be asking you to join in with a Social Sew too (read on for details and prizes)

Sew Long Summer is all about getting those transitional wardrobe pieces ready; finishing up all those things we meant to make this summer; and well, basically whatever Sew Long Summer means to you.


Share what you’ve been making to say “Sew Long Summer” to be entered into our random drawing.

Continental US participants will be entered to win a $20 store credit from Simply by Ti Fabrics.

All other participants will be entered to win a pattern of choice from DG Patterns.

To enter, please tag your sewing project with #SewLongSewcial18 on Instagram or facebook. You can also leave a link in the comments on the mahlicadesigns intro post. Please limit your entries to items you’ve sewn between Sept 10th and Sept 28th 2018. Winners will be notified and announced shortly thereafter.

We can’t wait to see what you’re making.

The full tour includes these talented sewists, so I hope you’ll follow along this week.

Sept. 10th Sewing A La Carte, Tenille’s Thread, A Custom Clothier, Made for Little Gents, Miss Marah Sewn

Sept. 11th Manning the Machine, mahlicadesigns, Sewing Vortex, Crafting Fiend

Sept. 12th Auschick Sews, Aurora Design Fabrics, My Heart Will Sew On, Vicky Myers Creations

Sept. 13th Flaxfield Sewing, Sewing with D, Musings of a Seamstress, Make it Sew with the Bear and Pea Atelier, Petite Font

Sept. 14th Sewing à la Carte, Sewing by Ti, Stitches by Laura, Sewing with Sarah, My Sewing Roots

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Modern Patriotic Star Quilt

Hey Sewists!  I cannot believe how quickly summer is going by.  I blinked and we are all of a sudden near the end of August.  I thought I should get around to sharing the quilt I made for the 4th of July before Halloween comes around.  I am pretty proud to share this one.  I have made two other quilt tops and am still hand quilting the double ring wedding quilt I started years ago, but this is my first completely finished quilt.  I even quilted it on my home machine myself! Talk about challenging a small basic machine.

I had been wanting to make a 4th of July quilt for a few years now.  There are so many quilts pinned to my 4th of July board for inspiration that I had a hard time narrowing down what I wanted.  The only thing I knew was that I didn’t want to make a literal interpretation of the flag.  I also did not want any prints that were in the Independence Day-themed section.  No, fireworks, stars, or eagle prints period.  I wanted a modern quilt full of fun patterns and vibrant reds and blues. I added in the turquoise as a way to pop with the reds.  I really tried to pick prints that went well with the others without singling anyone out as being different.  I think that I achieved that.  I really love every single print I picked out and I think that is why it took me so long to collect them all before starting.  It was totally worth taking that time too!

I settled on making a variation of this July Star Blocks Quilt from Cluck Cluck Sew.  I opted to make the star out of different white on white cotton prints surrounded by random other prints.  I also alternated my star blocks with a basic 9 patch block.  I like the overall look with how the white stars pop out from the craziness of the reds and blues. The finished quilt size is slightly bigger than a twin size with the measurements of 75″ x 95″.  It is the perfect size to throw on the ground for Eric and I to stretch out and watch the fireworks display. It is also big enough that we could put it on both of our laps if we are sitting in chairs too.

I started collecting fabrics in 2016 that fit the aesthetic I was hoping for even though I didn’t know what design I was going with.  It was when a local Jo-Ann’s was closing, so I was able to get so many pieces of fabric for a super low price.  By super low I mean, I was able to get my fabrics for $1.50-$2.50 a yard! I ended up using 11 different prints from what I bought in 2016.  I added 24 new prints, including the white on whites, and 2 others that have been in the stash since 2008.  Total wise, I used  11.25 yards of fabric for the top.   I also used 4 yards of the Warm & Natural Cotton Batting that was also purchased during the closing sale for $4.25 a yard ($17.00 total).

I love the overall look of the quilting pattern I went with. It has a window pane kind of feel that really stands out from the back. Speaking of backing, I used 4.5 yards of a dark indigo denim chambray.  I picked it up back in 2016 from the same Jo-Ann’s closing sale as I got some of the front fabrics from.  I got a great deal on it at $3.09 a yard for a total of $13.91.  Originally, I had wanted to patch denim from old jeans together to make the backing.  I ended up not having enough old denim to repurpose for this quilt, so I will save it up for another one down the line.

Overall,  I used 19.75 yards of fabric for a total fabric cost of $85.87, which doesn’t even include the thread costs.  I went through three brand new spools, and three partial spools.  So much thread!  This qualifies as one of the more expensive projects I have made.  I am glad I quilted it myself because that would have added another $150-$200 if I had taken somewhere to be done.  I think straight lines is probably the limit of my machine quilting capabilities.  Anything more detailed I will have to take in to be done.

I pushed myself outside of my box of garment sewing to make this and it worked.  It was so incredibly easy compared to garment sewing since it is all straight lines.  Don’t get me wrong, what it lacked in difficulty it more than made up for in how time-consuming it actually was. Quilts are not the instant gratification projects that a lot of garment sewing can be. Every tiny 1/4″ seam was pressed open before I could stitch anything else to it.  I am so incredibly proud of this quilt.  It turned out exactly how I had envisioned it once I started.  I have already started thinking about what kind of quilts I want to make in the near future.  I think I might have a new obsession with this.

Have you tried quilting? What did you like about it?  Or what didn’t you like?





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Sew Americana Blog Tour

Hey, Sewists!  Welcome to day two of the Sew Americana Blog Tour.  I am happy to be participating again for the third year in a row.  For 2016, I made this white eyelet version of McCall’s 6742, that remains one of my favorite dresses.  Last year, I made a new version of my self-drafted kimono.  This year, I wanted to go bigger to celebrate the 4th of July.

I decided to make two different pieces.  First up today, I am sharing my version of Simplicity 1280, view D. Unfortunately, this pattern is out of print, however, this pattern has been re-released as New Look 6555.  This is my second time making this view.  I am constantly wearing my other version, which is in a black and white leopard print.  Every time I put it on I think about how I want to make another version.  I figured it was high time I got around to doing that.

I made an XL, and I have more than enough ease in this.  So much ease, I opted to wear a belt for these pics.  I am hoping that it will shrink up just a bit more after washing the finished garment.  Even if it doesn’t, I am sure I will still reach for this shirt often.

For my fabric, I used two yards of this Arrow and Eagle Rayon Challis print from Sly Fox Fabrics. This is my first experience with Sly Fox and I must say I am impressed with their prices and quality. They helped sponsor this year’s blog tour by providing fabric to all participants if we wanted it.  They have even curated a Sew Americana Collection consisting of all their red, white, and blue fabrics in one spot for all their customers.  Thank you, Sly Fox, for hooking us all up!  I will definitely be ordering from them in the future.

All in all, I am pretty pleased with how this top turned out.  I think it looks great with my red skinny jeans and sandals for the 4th, but I think it will be great with some light washed skinnies or any other color of skinny jeans in my wardrobe.

Now, earlier I did say I had made two pieces.  If you follow me on Instagram you know what my second piece is.  Unfortunately, I did not quite finish it in time to post today.  I should have it finished tonight or tomorrow and ready to post about it later this week. Before that though, check out some of the other stops on the tour this week!  There are a lot of great sewists and bloggers sharing some amazing projects!

Monday, June 25:
Wild + Wanderful | Marvelous Auntie M | Handmade Boy
Phat Quarters | Call Ajaire

Tuesday, June 26:
Musings of a Seamstress | Sea of Estrogen | Sew and Tell Project
5 out of 4 Patterns | Little Heart Threads

Wednesday, June 27:
Middle River Studio | Elli & Nels | SewSophieLynn
Pear Berry Lane | The Eli Monster

Thursday, June 28:
Auschick Sews | EYMM | Mama & Leia
Seams Sew Lo | Stitched by Jennie

Friday, June 29:
Stylin’ Stacy | Rebel & Malice | On Wednesdays We Sew
FairyTale BT | That’s-Sew-Kari | Very Blissful

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Tie Dye Diva: Mermaid Maxi

Hey, Sewists!  I have something super fun to share today. Have you heard of Tie Dye Diva Patterns? I hadn’t until recently, and I can tell you I am impressed with Jen and her patterns.  The newest release is the Mermaid Maxi and I volunteered to stitch it up and share.  This style is one that my wardrobe had sadly been lacking.  I jumped on adding it to my overly stuffed closet.

To get some details out of the way first, the Mermaid Maxi pattern comes in two different styles (straight or flared) with two different pocket options (flat or ruched).  I went for the flared skirt with the flat pockets. Look at that flare.  It is to die for! Talk about accentuating my curves.

Sizing goes from 0-26 and I made a 20 hip graded to a 24 waist.  I probably could have just graded the waist to a 22 and it would have been a bit better of a fit since it has an enclosed elastic waistband and my fabric is so stretchy.  As it stands it is a smidge loose in the waist but still totally wearable.  Can I once again point out the curves happening here!?!  Look at my behind! This is probably one of the few times I will ever try to direct your attention so blatantly to that area! haha

For this skirt, I used a Liverpool knit from Cali Fabrics, my other great love (ssh, don’t tell my husband).  This was my first time sewing Liverpool and I have to say I like it.  I was a little unsure at first how much I would like it since it is super textured.  It kinda reminded me of those shirts that were popular in the 90’s that were really tiny like a doll shirt and stretched out to fit everyone.  Apparently, it is called a Popcorn Shirt. Who knew?  Anyways, I know that Liverpool is nowhere near that crazy shirt and I am glad I gave it a shot.  It sews up so easily. The best part is that the fabric doesn’t fray so I didn’t have to serge anything.  I was able to press all my seams open flat beautifully.  I also used the new Coats & Clark Eloflex thread to help give the seams a bit more movement.

Overall, I am pretty pleased with the skirt.  The directions were written clearly and easy to follow.  I opted to style it for these photos with a t-shirt, a me made vest, and some flat sandals to make it more casual.  I can easily see wearing this skirt with a dressier blouse and different shoes for date night though. Even making the skirt in a more special occasion knit like a stretch velvet for a holiday party would be cool. This really is a versatile skirt style.

Check out some of the other stops on this weeks blog tour and enter Jen’s giveaway on her blog to celebrate!  Also pick up this pattern right now for 20% off. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Monday, May 21
Tie Dye Diva Patterns – Mermaid Maxi Blog Tour and Giveaway!
Skirt Fixation – Mermaid Maxi Skirt Review

Tuesday, May 22
Musings of a Seamstress
Heather Handmade – How to Hem Lace – A Lace Trumpet Skirt

Wednesday, May 23
Sew Altered Style
Chook n Duck

Thursday, May 24
Penny Sew Vintage
Sharon Sews

Friday, May 25
Sewing By Ti
Brittany J Jones

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Cali Fabrics Chambray Week

This week on the Cali Fabrics blog it is Chambray Week! We are celebrating every day with a different blogger posting their chambray makes.  Today is my day to share.  I made two garments with a third that is not yet finished.  First up is McCall’s 7539 view C.


My second make is the Simplicity 8014 shirt dress pattern.  I opted not to put buttons on it and wear it as a jacket instead.  I am so in love with this version.  I feel super chic in this outfit.

Check out the Cali Blog for more about each of these projects.

Also, my photos turned out so much better now that I fixed the settings on my camera!  Now I need to go back and re-photograph my Stella Sweater.


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Breaking Ground Tour: Made For Mermaids

Hey, Sewists!  Have you been following along with the rest of the Breaking Ground Blog Tour this week?  There are a lot of great makes out there.  I am back with a second new make this week.  I saw someone post their version of this pattern on Facebook and I knew I had to have it!  It is the Mama Stella Sweater from Made for Mermaids.  This company has been on my radar for a bit but my dislike of PDF patterns stopped me every time I thought about getting one.  Funny thing, this year is my year of PDF patterns.  Of the 11 garments, I have made so far this year, only 1 has been from the Big 4.  The rest have been PDF’s from indie pattern companies.

The Stella features a front scoop neckline with three different back views.  There is also an off the shoulder view.  I chose to make view B, which features the deep V back with shoulder band. Look at that deep V.  It is just so delicious!

I have to say, I am pretty pleased with Made for Mermaids patterns.   They do not use numbered sizes instead, each size is labeled with a color.  I think this is an interesting way to reinforce the idea that ‘you are more than a number on a tag’.  I like it and applaud them for it.  My biggest complaint about the sizing is that there is not a finished measurement chart anywhere.   The patterns are also drafted for a 5’5″ woman and I am 5’8″, so as is this top is too short.  The great thing is Made for Mermaids has already thought of this and included an easy mathematical formula to adjust for your personal height.  My only other complaint is that the pieces for the neckband, waistband, back strap, and cuffs do not have physical pattern pieces.  They have a chart for what measurements to cut them to, which works because they are just rectangles, but I still prefer physical pattern pieces.  Physical pieces take a lot of the room for cutting error off the table.

The sweater did sew up nice and easy with my fabric choice. I used 2 yards of this Peach and Cream Floral Hacci Sweater Knit.  I picked it up from one of the last few Girl Charlee Knitfix bundles in 2016.  I miss Knitfix so much!  I actually haven’t shopped Girl Charlee since they stopped doing Knitfix. So sad, I  got some great prints in those bundles.

I was so blindly in love with this top that I didn’t even think about what to wear under it.  Luckily for this version I have a coral tank that coordinates well with the colors in the roses.  However,  the pattern instructions feature other versions with the Made for Mermaids Bridgette Bralette underneath and now I NEED to make that pattern.  That one is next up on my patterns to purchase list, so I can make more of this deep V view and the open keyhole back view as well.  I am already trying to figure out which fabrics to use next and what other interesting banding I can do with that deep V.  Next I am thinking of doing several criss crossing straps down the V to give it a corset inspired look.

On a sidenote, being your own photographer is hard.  Somehow I had my camera settings on manual focus so it would not do anything when I set my lense to auto-focus.  I fixed it for next time, but it is too late to retake my photos now. Grrr…

Have you tried Made for Mermaids yet? Which of their patterns have you made?

While you are at it check out the other stitchers on the Breaking Ground Blog Tour and what pattern companies they are trying out this week. The Full Tour includes all these creatives… we hope you’ll visit us each day:

Monday March 12- mahlicadesigns, Sewing Vortex, Sewing A La Carte, Little Heart Threads, The Sewing Scientist

Tuesday March 13- Musings of A Seamstress, A Custom Clothier, Octaves of Color, Aurora Design Fabrics, Sew Altered Style

Wednesday March 14- Flaxfield Sewing, Chook n Duck, Tales of a Tester, Sewing By Ti, Sewing Vortex, Kathy’s Kwilts and More

Thursday March 15- Very Blissful, Manning the Machine, Sew and Tell Project, Musings of a Seamstress, Stitches by Laura

Friday March 16- Lulu & Celeste, Tenille’s Thread, Sewing A La Carte, The Bear and Pea Atelier, Aurora Design Fabrics, Sprouting Jube Jube, Kathy’s Kwilts and More

To make the tour even more fun, our Breaking Ground blog team member, Gail is offering 2 patterns of choice from her pattern shop Flosstyle to one lucky winner.

Enter Here!


We’d love to see how you’re Breaking Ground this month. Share with us what you’re working on by using the hashtag #BreakingGround2018 across social media.

Better yet, join the Sew Alongs & Sewing Contests facebook group to sew along with the Breaking Ground theme for the entire month of March. In the group you’ll find support and encouragement for your projects and fun themed challenges.

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Breaking Ground Tour: Straight Stitch Designs


Welcome to my little corner of the sewing universe.  I am excited to be a part of the Breaking Ground Blog Tour for the second year in a row. This year, I chose to try Straight Stitch Designs.  I saw the Leschi top and thought it would help fill a hole in my closet. Kimberly, the mastermind behind Straight Stitch Designs, describes the Leschi top as ‘polished meets casual’.  I would agree with that description although, I am definitely getting some kimono vibes from it with its overlapping stand collar and the roomy straight sleeves with cuff.

Let’s start with the pros of the pattern:

  • Straight Stitch Designs uses layering in their PDF patterns, meaning you can select only the size you want to print instead of the entire graded nest.  This is a huge selling point for me with PDF patterns these days. It means using less ink and it makes it easier on the eyes when cutting.
  • The pattern instructions are well written and easy to follow, making it great for beginner sewists.
  • Minimal pattern pieces make for easy pattern construction. There are six different pattern pieces. Nine total pieces if you include cutting 2 of each the cuff and sleeve and 1 interfacing piece for the neckband. Not too bad.

Now for the cons:

  • It is a bit short for my personal preference.  When I paper fit the pieces, I thought it seemed like it was a good length.  After finishing it though, I feel like I need to add 4-5″ in length.  It hits just below the belt loops of my jeans right now and if I raise my arms my stomach hangs out.
  • The fit of the shoulders is a bit awkward.  The shoulder seam actually falls to the front of the shoulder to show off the gathering. I kept having to pull the top down in the front to make the seam hit in the right spot.  The armscye is also about an 1″ too long on the shoulder and looking at the finished pics in the instructions it hangs off the shoulder in her versions as well.  This lends to the casualness of the top, but I would still prefer it to hit right at the break of my shoulder.

All in all, I am okay with this top.   I am not sure it will make it into my end of year Top 5 makes though.  I kinda want to make another version in a size bigger.  Based on my measurements I would fit into a size 20, but based on the finished garment measurements I chose to make a size 18 graded to a 20 in the waist and hips.  While I have plenty ease of movement now, I would like just a smidge more in the bust.

I did like that the collar had interfacing in half of it to give it some structure. However, I was disappointed that it was not in the cuff.  Next time I will add it to the cuff as well.  I will also add a back yoke lining to help support the back gathers.

Speaking of the other materials I used, I should probably talk about my fabric choice. This fabric came from Girl Charlee and it is a cotton lawn that I picked up in November of 2016 during their Black Friday sale.  I ended up getting it for $2.50 a yard and I used 2 yards for this top.  I loved the worn paisley print in the orange and navy when I saw it.  Since it is a cotton lawn it is super lightweight making it great for spring and summer.  I will have to wear a tank top underneath of it though due to it being pretty sheer in person.  You really can’t tell from these picks just how thin the fabric is though.

I think if I make this style again I am going to use my personally drafted block and pattern out my own version with a few changes.  I want to change that shoulder seam, pictured above, to sit on the top of the shoulder.  I also want to add the extra length and a little more fullness to the side seams.  I like the high low hem but I want to change the curve at the side seams.  Currently, the pattern creates a sharp angle when you join the front to the back, making it hard to hem.  You can’t see it in the photos I took and I should have taken a photo during construction to illustrate what I am trying to describe.  I also want to re-draft the sleeve cap.  It is a bit too pointy for my pattern drafting eye and I feel like it needs to be a bit more rounded and full.  I also want to add some other design details like a breast pocket and sleeve tabs.  Maybe I will work on that later this month.

Have you tried Straight Stitch Designs yet?  She has a couple of other patterns that I am tempted to try, but I want to know what you all think of them first.

While you are at it check out the other stitchers on the Breaking Ground Blog Tour and what pattern companies they are trying out this week. The Full Tour includes all these creatives… we hope you’ll visit us each day:

Monday March 12- mahlicadesigns, Sewing Vortex, Sewing A La Carte, Little Heart Threads, The Sewing Scientist

Tuesday March 13- Musings of A Seamstress, A Custom Clothier, Octaves of Color, Aurora Design Fabrics, Sew Altered Style

Wednesday March 14- Flaxfield Sewing, Chook n Duck, Tales of a Tester, Sewing By Ti, Sewing Vortex, Kathy’s Kwilts and More

Thursday March 15- Very Blissful, Manning the Machine, Sew and Tell Project, Musings of a Seamstress, Stitches by Laura

Friday March 16- Lulu & Celeste, Tenille’s Thread, Sewing A La Carte, The Bear and Pea Atelier, Aurora Design Fabrics, Sprouting Jube Jube, Kathy’s Kwilts and More

To make the tour even more fun, our Breaking Ground blog team member, Gail is offering 2 patterns of choice from her pattern shop Flosstyle to one lucky winner.

Enter Here!


We’d love to see how you’re Breaking Ground this month. Share with us what you’re working on by using the hashtag #BreakingGround2018 across social media.

Better yet, join the Sew Alongs & Sewing Contests facebook group to sew along with the Breaking Ground theme for the entire month of March. In the group you’ll find support and encouragement for your projects and fun themed challenges.

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Hey Sewists. Long time no see.  I inadvertently took quite the break from my blog.  I have been busy and this was the easiest thing to temporarily give up to maintain my sanity.  I am pretty excited to share some of the things I have been up too over the last 4 months.  These are going to be some quick mini-reviews.

First up, I have been doing some pattern testing for few different indie pattern designers. By far, Bella Sunshine Designs is my favorite designer to test for.  Her patterns are well thought out and easy to sew up.  Melissa and her team run a great pattern testing process.  At the end of 2017, I sewed up these Sansa Flare pants.  They are super fun. For my final version, I used some gray space dyed activewear knit.  Then back in February of this year, I helped test the Eden Legging which fits the same as these flares from the knee up.  I, unfortunately, do not have pics of them.  I haven’t wanted to take pics of any of my makes this winter.  I promise I will share them some other time.

This one isn’t a  pattern test, but I was able to help Bella Sunshine Designs with some new updated marketing photos.  This is the Maggie Top.  It is the perfect basic tee!  Perfect!!  It is quick and easy to stitch up and I plan on making a lot of these.  I just need to find the perfect weight of cotton/spandex knit.  For this version I used a pink space dye activewear.  I made it to go with my Eden legging and Sansa flares to workout in.

Of course, I have also been sewing and blogging for  Cali Fabrics still.  This is my version of Simplicity 1317.  I got a yard of sequin fabric that I have been using as accents on a few pieces.  I am loving these sequins.  Check out my post on the Cali blog where I talk about how I altered this pattern to create this look.

My other sequin make for the Cali blog, is this version of McCall’s 7351. It is a shirt dress pattern that I hacked to be a tunic with a high low hem.  I still have some sequin left that I will be using down the road.  I also have 2 more tops stitched up for the Cali blog that I have yet to photo, so I can’t share those just yet.  I am hoping to get them photographed this week so they can be shared soon.

Other than that, I have signed up to be a part of some blog tours.  Expect those posts later this week.  I am also hosting a couple of Sunday Lately posts later this year.

The thing I am most excited for though, is that I have been drafting patterns!  Eric has been working on building me a website and I have been working on all the content for the site and patterns that I will be releasing.  I am hoping by the end of this year to have released my first pattern.  I am still quite a ways away, but it is becoming more of a reality.  My current dilemma is whether I should start with just PDF patterns and build up to having paper patterns or start with paper and PDF from the beginning.  What are your thoughts? Which do you prefer to sew?

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Thankful Sewing Blog Tour

Hey sewists!  It is almost that time of year where I get to go Christmas crazy.  Before I can do that I need to slow it down a bit and remember to be thankful.  I was pretty excited to join in on the Thankful Sewing Blog Tour to do just that.  Each day this month a blog will share a thankful post.  Today is my turn.  There are so many things I am thankful for in regards to sewing which makes it hard to narrow the focus of this post.  With that, I thought a top 3 list was in order.

1) I am thankful for the friends and community that sewing has provided. I mean, for real, do you realize how awesome our community is?!  This is one of the most supportive groups.  From the Facebook groups to Instagram to Blogs, there is a wealth of information and a group of people who are so willing to share and learn from each other.  It goes beyond just sewing too.  I have seen several Facebook posts asking about culture-related fashions without the conversation being hurtful.  Just a bunch of sewists genuinely wanting to learn and accept one another.

2) I am thankful for the opportunities sewing has provided.  I am thankful that I have been able to work in the garment industry as a technical designer as well as a seamstress.  That time has taught me about myself and what kind of designer I want to be.  I have also picked up and improved my sewing a lot.  I am also thankful for the opportunity to be a pattern tester for several different indie designers.  This has taught me a lot about writing home sewing patterns that are good for all skill levels.

3) And finally, I am thankful that I can have a dedicated sewing space.  Granted, my husband is more inclined to believe that space is a necessity so that he doesn’t end up stepping on straight pins in the living room, but I am still grateful that we can provide that space for me.  Not everyone has that.

Those are my top 3 things I am thankful for that sewing has provided.  What are you sew thankful for?

Intro to the tour

November 1st:


Sewing with Sarah

Week 1:

Nov 1st: Tenille’s Thread

Nov 2ndCandace Ayala

Nov 3rdHazelnut Handmade

Nov 4thMusing of a Seamstress

Nov 5th: Sewing Portfolios

Monday Nov 6thmahlicadesigns

Nov 7thSeams Sew Lo

Week 2:

Nov 8thMargarita on the Ross

Nov 9thStitched by Jennie

Nov 10thSewing with D

Monday Nov 13th5 outof 4 Patterns

Nov 14thTales of a Southern Mom

Week 3:

Nov 15thHazelnut Handmade

Nov 16thOctaves of Color

Nov 17thKainara Stitches

Nov 18thKutti Couture

Nov 19th: The Petite Sewist

Monday Nov 20thMy Heart will Sew On

Nov 21stNeedles to Say

Week 4:

Nov 22ndBack 40 Life

Nov 23rdLovemade Handmade

Nov 24thSewing by Ti

Nov 25thOn Wednesdays We Sew

Nov 26thPaisley Roots

Monday Nov 27thMermaid Mama Designs

Nov 28thSew Haute Blog

Nov 29thMa Moose Handmade

Nov 30thEverything Your Mama Made & More

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